How to make your home more child-friendly

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If you're having children (or already have them), you should think about making your home more child-friendly. This means removing hazards and making it easier for them to move around. From creating an open-plan layout to keeping sharp objects out of reach, here's how to make your home more child-friendly.

Open-plan layout

If you have an open-plan layout, knocking down a wall to separate the living room from the dining area would make it safer for children. This way, they can play in one area while you keep an eye on them. It also lets everyone stay together when preparing meals and cleaning up afterward.

Hard flooring

Hard flooring is preferable to carpet because it's easier to keep clean. However, carpets are difficult to vacuum, and washing them can be expensive, plus they collect dust mites, which can bother people with asthma (or allergies). If you're already stuck with a carpeted house, try using area rugs in areas where the kids are most likely to play. They can be easily taken out and machine-washed or -vacuumed without fear of damaging the underlying carpet.

Stairs

If your house has stairs, you should install gates at the top and bottom to prevent children from falling down them. If your older kids are likely to climb up them (or even use the stairs as a slide), you may want to block off the bottom. You can do this with some inexpensive plastic corner posts that prevent slipping.

A wet zone bathroom

Putting your bathtub in the bathroom where the kids are least likely to go would probably be a good idea when they're little. If you have an ensuite, it might be worth converting it into a wet zone bathroom with a baby-proof shower curtain or door. You can also install an extra safety bar in the bathtub, but you need to drill into the tiles, so it's a bit of a commitment.

Rounded furniture edges

If you're adding new furniture, try to pick the ones with rounded edges as they're safer for children. This way, it will be harder for them to hurt themselves on corners and sharp edges (which is especially true if they like climbing). No matter what kind of furniture you have, make sure there are no exposed wires on broken lamps and other household items.

Prepare for injuries

Every parent knows that children are accident-prone, so you should expect the worst. Stock up on Band-Aids and antibiotic cream just in case they get hurt (or even allergic to something). It's also wise to have a first aid kit nearby (but not where the kids can easily find it). MFASCO is the place to buy first aid suppliers and kits.

Washable wall paint

If you're going to use wall paint, make sure it's water- or alcohol-based. In some countries, solvent-based paints are illegal for interior use because they contain chemicals that can be harmful when inhaled. However, Europeans have been using washable paints on their walls for decades now, which is why the National Asthma Council recommends them. You can get them at your local hardware store for prices similar to regular paint.

Conclusion

If you follow the above tips, your kids should be much safer at home. So, it's worth spending a little bit of money now to save you much more later on. Additionally, it will make your life much easier if everything is child-friendly.

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